Tests and references listed on a website mean nothing to me.
There was a rather popular herbal “cold remedy” product here in the U.S. that used to tout how it was clinically proven to shorten the duration of a cold. It turned out that the clinical testing was done by by a company that was formed just to do that test. (The test was of course sponsored by the company that made the product being tested…) The testing company only comprised of two men, neither one of them a doctor or a scientist, nor did the company even have a clinic to do said “clinical testing”. After being sued by the FTC for false advertising, and a 23 million dollar class-action lawsuit, the product no longer mentions any testing on its packaging, and is now just marketed as something that “supports your immune system”. 88)
(Of course, boosting your immune system when it comes to colds is dubious in itself, because none of the symptoms that we associate with colds are actually due to the cold virus, but are in fact due to our immune systems over-reacting to the virus. Do we really want to boost our immune response and have more severe colds as a by-product? :-\ A great book about colds is Ah-Choo! The uncommon life of your common cold. By Jennifer Ackerman. It tells what the people who actually study colds for a living do when they get a cold.)
And University studies? If you look into these, more often than not, the University knows nothing about the study, has no record of the people involved in the study ever working there, or the study just turns out to be a class project turned in by a student at the University.
Since herbal/holistic/homeopathic products (Don’t get me started on homeopathy… 88) ) aren’t bound by the same regulations as food or medications, short of outright lying that their product can cure something, as long as they have a disclaimer on their packaging that these claims have never been verified, they can more or less say anything they want.
But ask yourself this… If they actually worked, would they need to sell these things by mail-order or on late night TV? If it worked, they wouldn’t need to do any advertising whatsoever because everyone would be using it on a daily basis.
I’m sure you’re fine sticking to shampoo, toothpaste, or face wash, but just don’t buy into any outlandish claims because the actual products might not be any more effective than just using water.